Because most of us rarely get into car accidents, it makes sense that not everyone knows what to do after a crash. You want to do the right thing to get needed medical care and protect your legal rights, and you don’t want to make a mistake that takes away your ability to seek compensation if you were hurt.
Knowing what to do ahead of time can save you time and money in case you are ever in a serious auto wreck. Here are our tips for what to do in the minutes and hours after a car accident in the Toledo area:
Do I have to call the police?
Your parents might have taught you to call 911 every time you get into an auto accident. That is a good idea anytime you or someone else involved is hurt and in need of medical attention. And if there is significant damage to your vehicle, you will want a police report to help you make a claim. But you should know that Ohio law does not require you to call the police for every car accident. Though some cities have different rules, state law only requires police involvement when the the accident requires medical care, there was a fatality, or there was property damage totaling more than $1,000.
What should I say to the other driver?
You should be careful not to say anything they could interpret as an apology or admission of fault. You should also try to avoid an angry or emotional outburst. If possible, try to stay calm and ask for the other driver’s insurance and contact information. If there were witnesses, ask for their contact info too.
Any other evidence I should collect?
If you can, use your cellphone to take photos of the damage to your vehicle, damage to the other vehicle, the car accident scene and any injuries. Later, after you go to the hospital, keep careful track of all the documentation doctors provide.